Cole Co. drunk driving crash sends five children to the hospital

3 years 8 months 3 weeks ago Tuesday, September 02 2014 Sep 2, 2014 Tuesday, September 02, 2014 10:18:00 AM CDT September 02, 2014 in News
By: Drew Whiteman, KOMU 8 Digital Producer

COLE COUNTY - Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers arrested a Creve Coeur man Monday for suspicion of driving while intoxicated after a car accident in Cole County sent five children to the hospital.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol report said 59-year-old James V. O'Brien was travelling eastbound on Highway 54 when the vehicle he was driving veered into the median, hit two road signs and ran into the side of a vehicle that was in the median cross-over attempting to turn south onto Route E.

The driver of the second vehicle, 16-year-old Dylan Evers of Henley, and all three passengers were injured in the crash. The driver's 7-year-old brother Joseph Evers, 15-year-old Jaylin McKinney and 6-year-old Gavin Reed were all seriously injured in the accident and a helicopter life flighted Joseph Evars and Gavin Reed to University Hospital.

Jaylin McKinney and Joseph Evars were recovering in stable condition as of Tuesday morning. Gavin Reed was out of the hospital.

O'Brien didn't report any injuries, but ambulances took two passengers in his vehicle to the hospital. His wife, Rita Graham, 53, and his 14-year-old son, James P. O'Brien, both reported moderate injuries but were out of the hospital as of Tuesday morning. 

Troopers arrested O'Brien for suspicion of operating a motor vehicle in a careless and imprudent manner and six counts of felony second-degree assault for allegedly operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated.

As of Tuesday morning, O'Brien was not formally charged and had left Cole County Jail on bond.

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